With close to 95 percent of soybeans and about 70 percent of corn being genetically modified in the United States, it may seem as if current farming developments are growing towards monoculture, mass production, and large corporate ownership.  However, on the opposite side of the spectrum, there has been an increasingly popular interest in homesteading: The practice of relying on self-sufficiency, smart conservation, and personal accountability for items essential for sustainable living.

Although many products, from websites to how-to books, have sprouted to encourage this trend, Humble Seed—the brainchild of Phoenix, Ariz.-based couple Jim and Kristen Mitchell—has gained quite a following. The duo, inspired by the proliferation of contaminated food recalls, the movement towards locally sourced food, and the desire for a self-reliant lifestyle, packaged their non-GMO, non-hybrid seeds in canisters decorated with punchy, bright artwork. Indeed, the packaging is designed to both inspire younger generations to take interest in gardening, and to allow “for ‘plant now or later’ convenience.”

The company also offers heirloom varieties—seeds traditionally grown during earlier periods in human history. “You can save seeds from your produce and know they’re going to grow for you next year,” the Mitchells explained in an interview with Organic Connections. “We wanted our customers to have a one-time investment in Humble Seed; it starts with gardening and then continues on for years to come.”

In essence, the goal of the fledgling company is simple: To motivate customers to return to their roots, and create a tangible and first-hand knowledge over the experience of growing their own food. The founders continue, “It’s something that people want to get back to and we’re just trying to make it easy for them to do so.”

Read more in Organic Connections.